Human trafficking: the victims

By Marcos Ortiz

Published 04/24 2014 03:44PM

Updated 04/25 2014 12:38PM

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Utah) – Victor Rax offered newly arrived undocumented immigrants protection.
But authorities call Rax an evil man who took advantage of down and out Latino boys.
His case is one of Utah's most horrific cases of human trafficking. ABC 4 Utah tracked down some of his victims Rax is accused of befriending then turning them into his “mules” pushing drugs at local schools.

“We met him walking through the park,” says Julio. “He offered some stuff to us.”

Julio isn’t the 19-year old boy’s real name. For his protection his name like others in this report has been changed.
Those who know Rax claim he roamed Salt Lake City’s parks, looking for young Latinos, offering them protection.

"He would say he could help, offer protection,” says his former roommate Jose. “If you wanted to go to the park or elsewhere nothing would happen to you. He says he was the protector of this area of Salt Lake.”

But authorities say Rax was a human trafficker, recruiting boys for his drug trade. In February after Rax was arrested by a special investigative unit within the Attorney General’s office, he was called “an evil man.”

"He was involved in trafficking teen boys for sexual purposes, some of these teen boys he would then turn into drug mules for him,” says Ken Wallentine, Chief of Law Enforcement.
Investigators claim those young teens would sell drugs in high schools and junior high schools throughout Salt Lake City.

“We always had to be with him after school until around midnight,” recalls Julio.

The former roommate witnessed the abuse.

“I saw him take their clothes off and then fondle them and eventually sexually molested them,” says Jose. “I go into another room and he would call for me to come back and watch. I wouldn't.”

The victims claim Rax took them to his bedroom to get high and drunk.

“He told me to drink I didn't want to,” says Ernesto, another young victim. “But he made me and then he tried go into my pants, touch my ****.

Julio was thirteen years old when it happened to him.
“He'd make us go in his room and he'd do stuff (sex acts) to us,” he says.

But Martha Montoya never say any evil coming from Victor Rax. She says Rax is like a son to her.

“I never saw nothing wrong,” she says. “I've never seen no nastiness either.”

Montoya says he rented a room at her home and brought boys over.

“The boys would go back there play video games, watch tv (and) play Nintendo and it was fine,” she says.

Even after his arrest Montoya claims the boys kept showing up at her house.

“I guess these little poor kids, their mothers and fathers didn't have time for them and they'd come knock on my door and ask for him,” says Montoya.

Last month, state prosecutors filed 62 felony counts against Rax, accusing him of human trafficking, sex abuse and drug dealing. He allegedly abused 16 boys and forced Jose to help him.

“I could never go to police because I was the only one who knew what he was doing,” says Jose. “If I did he would kill these boys. He told me that. He also said he would find my sons and brother and kill them too.”

Threatening his victims appears to be his trademark.

“He never told me he'd kill me,” says Julio. “But after I found out he'd threatened my family I got scared and I didn't want my family to get hurt

After Rax was jailed, he allegedly convinced his brother to force the boys from testifying.

Victor Rax-Chun, the brother, is accused of talking with a victim at his home. The brother is now facing tampering charges.

No one really knows why Rax came to Salt Lake City.
Authorities say he was deported several times while in California. Before coming to Utah, his former roommate says Rax was a “coyote” transporting undocumented immigrants into the U.S. Jose says it made him wealthy.

“I once saw two large bags of money a foot high and two feet wide filled with money,” says Jose. “He had lots of money.”

Years ago, Rax was under investigation for the same thing. But the witness disappeared and police had no case.
This time, 17 victims are under protection and ready to testify against him.

“I think he's a bad man,” says Ernesto. “I just hope he rots in prison.”

Julio agrees. He finally escaped the clutches of Rax when he turned 18 years old. He says Rax was no interested in him. He says Rax only liked young boys.

“Now that I know he's in jail I feel great that he's in there,” says Julio. “I'm happy for other kids who were worse than me.”

Authorities say Rax is in the U.S. illegally. But state prosecutors say if Rax is convicted, he'll spend a very long time in prison first before there's any consideration of deportation.

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